St. Chapelle and National Cathedral in Washington D.C. comparisons


St.Chapelle and National Cathedral in Washington D.C. comparisons

St.Chapelle and National Cathedral in Washington D.C. comparisons

SaintChapelle chapel is a royal medieval chapel located in the French cityof Paris. The royal chapel is one of the most magnificent gothicarchitectural structures in Europe. Some literatures have consideredit to be the most important achievement of the French gothicarchitecture, commonly referred to as Rayonnant. The chapel wasconsecrated in 1248 and is one of the surviving buildings from theCapetian royal palace (Bittner, 2015). The Washington NationalCathedral is an Episcopal Church building located in the UnitedStates Capital, Washington DC. The cathedral which took over 80 yearsto construct is what can be referred to neo gothic architectural workdue to its similarities with gothic architectural structures inmedieval Europe. The chapel construction was influenced by thearchitectural structures in the St. Chapelle chapel (Cohen, 2014).

Thereare several similarities as well as differences between St. Chapellechapel and the Washington National Cathedral. One of the mostimportant similarities is the use of stained glasses. Althoughstained glasses windows is a common feature borrowed from the gothicarchitecture in modern designs, it stands out in the WashingtonNational Cathedral. Another major similarity between the twostructures is the use of pointed arches. This is the main commonfeature in the two structures. Additionally, both structures usedflying buttress, a common feature of gothic architectures, especiallyin churches. Both structures also used a variety of ceiling vaultingto enhance strength and aesthetic value. The exteriors of bothstructures are also adorned with gargoyles and grotesques. Despitethis, the gargoyles and spikes structures are the main differencebetween the two structures. Additionally, although the chapelinfluenced the architectural structures of the cathedral there areevidences of historical differences (Cohen, 2014).


Bittner,R. (2015). BuildingWashington National Cathedral,Arcadia Publishing, ISBN 1467134546.

Cohen,M. (2014). TheSainte-Chapelle and the Construction of Sacral Monarchy: RoyalArchitecture in Thirteenth-Century Paris.Cambridge University Press.